Port City Colombo project to add 13.8 bln USD to Sri Lankan economy: PwC

The Port City Colombo project will add 13.8 billion U.S. dollars to the country’s economy once fully operational, says a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

The PwC study evaluated the impact of the Port City Colombo project on macroeconomic variables including employment, GDP, FDI, balance of payments, and government revenue, and was presented to the Colombo Port City Economic Commission on Tuesday.

The study found that the project could progressively attract additional investments up to 12.7 billion dollars over the next 20 years.

The PwC assessment evaluates the potential impact of the Port City Colombo across five key macroeconomic variables: Employment, Gross Domestic Product, Foreign Direct Investment, Balance of Payments, and Government Revenue.

Having initiated the original report in early 2020, the November 2021 update explores the effect of the Special Economic Zone status conferred by way of the Colombo Port City Economic Commission Act and the “Five Year Plot Roll-out Strategy” of CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt) Ltd – the Project Company.

The Port City is envisaged to be focused on high-value modern services such as Information & Communication Technology, maritime services, financial services, and other professional services by leveraging Sri Lanka’s strategic location amongst a fast-growing region, skilled talent pool, low-cost environment, and the ease of doing business offered by the SEZ legislation.

As an oceanfront extension of the existing Colombo Central Business District, Port City is also expected to have a strong destination appeal for city tourism. The five land plots earmarked in the Master Plan for luxury city hotels and an integrated resort could add a room inventory of ~2,900 keys to complement MICE, yachting, medical value travel, business, and leisure travellers.

Considering the mammoth scale of this urban development project, completion is expected progressively over the next 20 years attracting as much as $12.7 bn in additional investment. Providing a globally competitive business environment will be a prerequisite in attracting FDIs which could take-off the development of the Port-City (and the country) to the expected levels.

The analysis shows that Sri Lanka benefits significantly by the Port City development project provided construction and operational stages proceed as planned.

The study said that the construction and operational phases of the project would benefit the national economy if it is properly integrated with the local economy.

The Colombo Port City was built by China Harbor Engineering Company. The project will be Sri Lanka’s first special economic zone for high-end services.


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